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American Authors - What We Live For

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What We Live For

American Authors

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The sophomore set from New York-based American Authors doesn't stray too far from their debut Oh, What a Life, but they make up for the lack of freshness with scope. On What We Live For, the quartet refine their upbeat, foot-stomping brand of pastoral Mumford rock and set it on course for the tier occupied by pop/rock chart-toppers like OneRepublic and Imagine Dragons. Production and songwriting have also been polished, courtesy of Dirty Canvas label-head duo Aaron Accetta and Shep Goodman, resulting in a collection of songs that could all be potential singles. In their bid for arena rock glory, American Authors come close to delivering the best OneRepublic album that tourmate Ryan Tedder never released. The biggest tunes burst down the barn doors as the band -- vocalist/guitarist Zac Barnett, guitarist/banjo player James Adam Shelley, drummer Matt Sanchez, and bassist Dave Rublin -- deliver in earnest unison. "This Is What We Live For" sets the tone with the first of many singalong choruses, quite similar to Walk the Moon's "Shut Up and Dance" (incidentally, the track was co-written by Captain Cuts, the trio behind that hit). "Right Here Right Now" -- another Captain Cuts track -- and "Pocket Full of Gold" are rousing, hand-clapping hoedowns that build on American Authors' biggest single, "Best Day of My Life." That folk-pop spirit reaches an apex on "Nothing Better," which is essentially the '90s one-hit wonder "Cotton-Eyed Joe" updated for 2016. The major OneRepublic moments are the standouts: "Counting Stars" lives on in "I'm Born to Run," while the uplifting "Pride" infuses joy and positivity like "Feel Again" or "I Lived." A few breaks are allowed to let you catch your breath, like on the X Ambassadors slow burn of "Replaced" and the heartfelt "Mess with Your Heart," which features guitar work from Scott Harris (Shawn Mendes, Daya) and Bryan Fryzel (Misterwives). Whether inspiring singalongs or lighters-up reverie, American Authors have crafted an easy listen of enjoyable, feel-good anthems custom-made for the main stage. On the penultimate track, "Superman," they even include a killer guitar solo and an Arcade Fire-sized chorus of "I feel like Superman/I'm making waves/In my heart again." The sentiment flows throughout What We Live For, a solid pick for fans of passionate, radio-ready, summertime spirit. ~ Neil Z. Yeung

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What We Live For

American Authors

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1
What We Live For
00:02:58

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Ryan Rabin, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Ryan McMahon, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Additional Producer, Programmer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Additional Producer, Programmer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Captain Cuts, Producer, Programmer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Benjamin Berger, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Vocals, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Shelley, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ben Berger, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Rublin, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

2
I'm Born To Run
00:03:26

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Kevin Fisher, Programmer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Vocals, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Shelley, ComposerLyricist - David Rublin, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - James Adam Shelley, Electric Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Sweet Talker, Producer, Co-Producer

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

3
Pride
00:03:11

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Additional Keyboards, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2015 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

4
Right Here Right Now
00:03:01

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Ryan Rabin, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Ryan McMahon, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Additional Producer, Programmer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Additional Producer, Programmer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Captain Cuts, Producer, Programmer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Benjamin Berger, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Vocals, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Shelley, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ben Berger, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Rublin, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

5
Nothing Better
00:03:38

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Additional Keyboards, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

6
Replaced
00:03:32

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

7
Go Big Or Go Home
00:02:49

Jonathan Davis, ComposerLyricist - Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Additional Keyboards, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Additional Keyboards, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2015 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

8
Mess With Your Heart
00:04:03

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Scott Harris, Producer, Guitar, Additional Producer, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Bryan Fryzel, ComposerLyricist - Frequency, Producer, Keyboards, Programmer, Recording Engineer, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Shep Goodman, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Aaron Accetta, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Vocals, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Electric Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

9
No Love
00:03:33

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

10
Pocket Full Of Gold
00:03:00

Jonathan Davis, ComposerLyricist - Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

11
Superman
00:04:08

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

12
Mind Body Soul
00:05:02

Neal Avron, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Matt Sanchez, Drums, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Shep Goodman, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Aaron Accetta, Producer, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - American Authors, MainArtist - Zachary Barnett, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Rublin, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - James Adam Shelley, Banjo, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Zac Barnett, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Joe Costable, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2016 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

Descrizione dell'album

The sophomore set from New York-based American Authors doesn't stray too far from their debut Oh, What a Life, but they make up for the lack of freshness with scope. On What We Live For, the quartet refine their upbeat, foot-stomping brand of pastoral Mumford rock and set it on course for the tier occupied by pop/rock chart-toppers like OneRepublic and Imagine Dragons. Production and songwriting have also been polished, courtesy of Dirty Canvas label-head duo Aaron Accetta and Shep Goodman, resulting in a collection of songs that could all be potential singles. In their bid for arena rock glory, American Authors come close to delivering the best OneRepublic album that tourmate Ryan Tedder never released. The biggest tunes burst down the barn doors as the band -- vocalist/guitarist Zac Barnett, guitarist/banjo player James Adam Shelley, drummer Matt Sanchez, and bassist Dave Rublin -- deliver in earnest unison. "This Is What We Live For" sets the tone with the first of many singalong choruses, quite similar to Walk the Moon's "Shut Up and Dance" (incidentally, the track was co-written by Captain Cuts, the trio behind that hit). "Right Here Right Now" -- another Captain Cuts track -- and "Pocket Full of Gold" are rousing, hand-clapping hoedowns that build on American Authors' biggest single, "Best Day of My Life." That folk-pop spirit reaches an apex on "Nothing Better," which is essentially the '90s one-hit wonder "Cotton-Eyed Joe" updated for 2016. The major OneRepublic moments are the standouts: "Counting Stars" lives on in "I'm Born to Run," while the uplifting "Pride" infuses joy and positivity like "Feel Again" or "I Lived." A few breaks are allowed to let you catch your breath, like on the X Ambassadors slow burn of "Replaced" and the heartfelt "Mess with Your Heart," which features guitar work from Scott Harris (Shawn Mendes, Daya) and Bryan Fryzel (Misterwives). Whether inspiring singalongs or lighters-up reverie, American Authors have crafted an easy listen of enjoyable, feel-good anthems custom-made for the main stage. On the penultimate track, "Superman," they even include a killer guitar solo and an Arcade Fire-sized chorus of "I feel like Superman/I'm making waves/In my heart again." The sentiment flows throughout What We Live For, a solid pick for fans of passionate, radio-ready, summertime spirit. ~ Neil Z. Yeung

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